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Ambient - Released October 10, 2018 | Emika Records

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Berlin-based electronic singer/songwriter Emika presents her fifth full-length album, Falling in Love with Sadness, following her 2017 album, Melanfonie. After the relative minimalism of her last few albums, this record is crammed with pop hooks and bright synth work. ~ Liam Martin
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Dva

Electro - Released June 7, 2013 | Ninja Tune

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On her second full-length, DVA, Emika works from the same ice-blue palette, but pulls back on the wobbling dubstep bass frequencies and trendy production to let her plaintive female vocals take center stage. Although a more fragile release, DVA balances the Berlin (by way of Bristol) artist's pop and experimental sides, just as her self-titled debut did. "Young Minds" and "Sing to Me" reinterpret the chilled, pulsing soundscapes of "Drop the Other" and "Double Edged," and the shimmering darkwave ballads "Fight for Your Right" and "Mouth to Mouth" resemble a cross-hatching of Grimes and the Knife. Poppy tendencies keep the song structures tight, but Emika's adherence to a dark, dystopian vision sets her apart from the mainstream. Like goth queen Siouxsie Sioux, she seems heartbroken and incapable of pleasure, achingly singing through tears on "Dem Worlds" and "Primary Colours," and then seeking vengeance without a hint of remorse on "Sleep with My Enemies." A mix of retro and modern ideas keeps the release interesting, as do the slight soundscape shifts between shadowy synth pop, electroclash, and witch house. Even though Emika's deadpan, frosty attitude keeps the audience at arm's length and DVA lacks an obvious stand out single (with the exception of the tripped-out cover of Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game"), it is a cohesive, rewarding album that cleverly manages to dodge the usual sophomore pitfalls. The debut is the one with the hits that draw you into her dark mood, while DVA is the sludgy one you sink into and wallow in for a while. ~ Jason Lymangrover
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Dance - Released May 4, 2015 | Emika Records

Returning to vocal techno music after the all-instrumental, mostly piano album Klavírní, Drei is the third proper effort from electro artist Emika, and just like 2013's DVA, it seems like another refinement of her 2011 self-titled debut. Glassy melodies meet deep, dark, and almost dubstep-styled bass, while solitude and self-reflection drive the fragile lyrics. It's a simple formula, yet the results are diverse. "Without Expression" slinks across the room muttering "there's something wrong with me" and winds up utterly attractive and arguably sensual. On the other hand, the throbbing space song called "My Heart Bleeds Melody" could be lifted for any video game soundtrack that requires a little extra tension. "Battles" is a brittle opener and dramatic enough to draw fans of Florence + the Machine, while "What's the Cure" feels like Siouxsie & the Banshees on assorted cyber-drug downers and should hold appeal for anyone who has ever considered going out to the local club's "goth night." The meticulous and minimal productions make this a worthy after-club record for the Berlin and Detroit techno faithful as well, plus, anyone who misses the heyday of Portishead and trip-hop as a whole will find the temperament here perfect for chilling through any Blue Room flashbacks. Start here and work backwards as Emika's bewitching music continues to grow in strength. ~ David Jeffries
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Electro - Released October 3, 2011 | Ninja Tune

With everyone from Rihanna to Britney Spears now incorporating wobble basslines and syncopated beats into their polished pop sound, the dubstep scene has well and truly gone mainstream. Attempting to take it right back into the underground comes the self-titled debut album from Emika, a Czech born, U.K.-raised, and now Berlin-based former sound engineer, whose tension-filled soundscapes are unlikely to be jostling with recent chart-toppers Nero and DJ Fresh for the number one spot. Aptly self-described as a "beautiful nightmare," its fusion of ethereal melodies and hushed harmonies with avant-garde electronica and twitchy rhythms is indeed as enchanting as it is unsettling. None more so than on the sinister "FM Attention," whose elasticated synths, eerie industrial noises, and echo-laden banshee vocals seem destined to be played over the finale of a particularly trippy horror movie. This sense of disorientation is a recurring theme throughout the album's 12 tracks, ensuring that you're never quite sure where Emika is going to go next. "3 Hours" beings with some hypnotic, train-track percussion before merging with an array of twisted techno bleeps, sub-woofer basslines, and a surprising Lady Gaga-turns-aloof robotic chorus; the jerky, claustrophobic dub of "Double Edge," and glacial cinematic trip-hop of "Professional Loving" hark back to Emika's classically trained beginnings with their opening piano intros/outros (something also alluded to on the closing Beethoven-inspired instrumental "Credit Theme"), while the skittering muted beats, indecipherable wailings, and ambient effects of the melancholic "The Long Goodbye" explain why Thom Yorke is such a big fan. There are a few relatively less challenging moments, such as the seductive R&B-tinged dub-pop of "Drop the Other" and the pulsing beats and chiming synths of "Come Catch Me," but without question, this is a record designed to be listened to in isolation, preferably through a massive pair of high-quality headphones rather than in the mass communal surroundings of a club. The female James Blake labels are inevitable but rather misleading, as Emika doesn't really sound like anyone else out there, an admirable feat which should appeal to those dismayed by dubstep's recent commercial takeover. ~ Jon O'Brien
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Ambient - Released June 11, 2018 | Emika Records

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Run

Ambient - Released July 23, 2018 | Emika Records

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Ambient - Released December 22, 2017 | Emika Records

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Trip Hop - Released January 26, 2015 | Emika Records

By the time this third album appeared, Emika's electronic and eclectic back catalog had already touched upon dubstep, downtempo, synth pop, and pop, all while blending traditional melodies with performances that were odd enough to land her on the quirky Ninja Tune label. Early versions of her second LP, 2013's DVA, came with the bonus, piano-only, three-track Klavirni EP, from which this album version literally picks ups with "Dilo 4," and everything that follows is sequentially named. Take into consideration that the Czech-raised musician was "classically trained" and feels much love for homeland hero Leos Janacek, and this mostly piano album might be a prickly affair, but Emika isn't so "classically minded" after all. The artist wanders into the warm world of George Winston and other stalwarts from the new age label Windham Hill on "Dilo 6," a delicate number which sounds like chasing butterflies in the backyard. "Dilo 8" comes with a pop melody so achingly familiar one wonders if it's "haunting" or just "borrowed," and speaking of ghosts, the use of the sustain pedal is often heavy as notes echo and hang, echo and hang. None of these points are insults, because Klavirni convincingly embraces the sweet side of life, but this album doesn't sound like Emika the edgy, sonic mixologist until "Dilo 9" adds some electronic, Orb-like transmissions into the mix. An Emika album for fans and their parents is the snarky way to look at it, but the sweet way to see Klavirni is still as a "background" or "mood" album, one built for returning customers. ~ David Jeffries
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Electro - Released June 28, 2013 | Ninja Tune

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Electro - Released April 12, 2013 | Ninja Tune

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House - Released November 30, 2014 | Emika Records

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Trip Hop - Released March 4, 2016 | Emika Records

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House - Released July 24, 2015 | Emika Records

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Electro - Released September 5, 2011 | Ninja Tune

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Electro - Released February 13, 2012 | Ninja Tune

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House - Released October 28, 2016 | Emika Records

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Electro - Released May 10, 2010 | Ninja Tune

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Chill-out - Released March 29, 2019 | Emika Records

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Electro - Released May 10, 2010 | Ninja Tune

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Electro - Released December 28, 2009 | Ninja Tune